Police in Vancouver say a man has been charged in relation to four sexual assaults against young women in the city’s downtown core between Canada Day 2009 and Christmas Eve 2010.
Arturo Garcia Gorjon, 45, was recently arrested in Regina following new evidence investigators received nearly 14 years after the first crime was committed, the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) said. He has been charged with four counts of sexual assault.
Advocates for victims of sexual violence, like Hilla Kerner with the Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter, say they’re thankful for the women who came forward to share their stories and participate in the judicial system, which does not have a high rate of guilty verdicts in sexual assault cases.
“All the power to the women who came forward and made complaints to the police,” she said.
“The fact that police conducted thorough investigations that resulted in arrest and charges is rare in all situations,” said Kerner. “We need to see a more diligent response from police and from the judicial system as a whole.”
She said sexual assaults, like these four, which took place at random in public spaces, have a chilling effect on women’s safety.
“They discourage women from using public space, so holding those men accountable, charging them, it’s very, very important because women should be able to walk free and safe.”